Do you have leftover pumpkin from your Thanksgiving pumpkin pie and you’re not sure what to do with it? How about split pea pumpkin soup? Pumpkin makes a great addition to a soup. In this recipe, yellow split peas cooked with pumpkin are blended, creating a creamy delicious soup and topped with herbed croutons Making yellow split pea pumpkin soup is so easy and perfect to warm you up on a cold evening.
This recipe is super simple and there are no crazy ingredients you need to search for to make this recipe. Use up pumpkin leftover from your holiday pie or simply pick up a can of pumpkin puree in the store. Use what you need and freeze the rest for another dish later on.
Yellow split peas
Split peas are field peas which are specifically grown for drying. They are from the same family as lentils. The peas are split apart at their natural seam so they cook faster. This process means you won’t need to soak these dried legumes before cooking. These peas naturally soften and begin to fall apart as they cook and if you blend them after cooking it results in a nice creamy texture.
Beyond tasting good, yellow and green split peas provide much nutrition starting with being an excellent plant-based source of protein and soluble fiber.
Reasons you should be eating more split peas
There are numerous health benefits when split peas are included in a balanced diet. Here are a few:
- Good source of protein with all the essential amino acids to help provide the body with energy and build muscle.
- Split peas contain tryptophan, the amino acid used by the body to make neurotransmitters which affect the mood and regulate the appetite.
- Soluble fiber stabilizes blood sugar and helps clear the lipids in your blood which may improve LDL cholesterol levels.
- Source of B vitamins including thiamin and folate which are important to energy metabolism, immunity and the formation of red blood cells.
- Split peas provide numerous essential minerals for the body including iron, calcium and more.
Leeks are part of the allium family which also includes garlic, onions, shallots and chives. This lesser used vegetable has a milder flavor than other varieties in the family. It grows differently than the other family members, forming a stalk rather than a bulb.
The stalks of the leeks grow in very tight layers and often there is residual dirt from the growing process that makes its way into these layers. This means that it’s necessary to thoroughly wash your leeks so you can remove all the dirt and grit. Nothing is worse than a bite of sandy soup!!
My process for cleaning leeks, is simply to cut the white part which I will be using for cooking into thin slices. After slicing, I place them in a bowl of water, rinsing them thoroughly. Following this rinse, I place them in a strainer and run a bit more water over the leeks while in the strainer to make sure all the dirt is removed.
Once they are clean, shake all the excess water off and continue cooking with the leeks.
Interesting facts and tips for leeks
Leeks can be regrown so you can use repeatedly. That piece at the bottom, with the roots still intact is all you need. Simply place it in a little bit of water, place it in a sunny spot and allow it regrow. Then you can trim off the regrowth and use repeatedly. Change out the water every 4-6 days to keep it fresh and growing.
Don’t throw away they greens. Most recipes only call for using the white part as that is where all the flavor is found. Usually I save the greens and use them to add some flavor in a soup or stock. I simply wash them and store them in the freezer until I am ready to use.
The flavor of the leek changes when harvested after a frost. The flavor gets sweeter and more flavorful! If you grow you own leeks, wait to harvest them following the frost but before the ground freezes.
Yellow split pea pumpkin soup with herbed croutons
- 1 T olive oil
- 1 each leek whites only, thinly sliced
- 2 each medium carrots diced
- 1 cup celery diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup yellow split peas
- 1 each bay leaf
- 1 cup pumpkin
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp dried rosemary
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 4 slices whole wheat bread
- ½ tsp herbes de provence
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp olive oil
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Heat 1 T olive oil in a large sauce pan and add leeks, carrots and celery. Stir frequently and cook for 5 minutes or until leeks are translucent. Then add garlic and cook an additional 60 seconds stirring frequently.
- Add split peas, bay leaf and 4 cups vegetable broth. Cook for 60-75 minutes or until split peas are tender.
- When the split peas are just about ready, add the pumpkin and then continue to cook until peas are tender.
- When ready, ladle about 2/3 of the soup into a blender and puree. Use caution when transferring and watch out for splashes of hot soup.
- After blending, return blended soup to the pot, add the thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper. Cook an additional five minutes. Then taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
- Cook croutons while soup is cooking.
- Cut bread into bite size cubes. Place in a bowl and toss with oil and seasonings until evenly distributed.
- Place croutons on a baking sheet. Place into a hot oven and cook for 5-8 minutes or until toasted a golden brown.
- Serve up soup into bowls and top with croutons.
Did you make this delicious soup recipe? How did you like the combination of split peas and pumpkin? Please leave me a comment here on the blog. Or send me a message using the chat button in the right bottom of your screen. Did you take pictures? Be sure to tag @cookeatlivelove so I can see your creations.